In an interview with Fortune, Mitt Romney admitted that one of the ways he will reduce government spending is to cut all funding for PBS.
Romney was asked by Fortune where he would cut government spending, and he answered, “There are three major areas I have focused on for reduction in spending. These are in many cases reductions which become larger and larger over time. So first there are programs I would eliminate. Obamacare being one of them but also various subsidy programs — the Amtrak subsidy, the PBS subsidy, the subsidy for the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities. Some of these things, like those endowment efforts and PBS I very much appreciate and like what they do in many cases, but I just think they have to strand (sic) on their own rather than receiving money borrowed from other countries, as our government does on their behalf.”
Mitt Romney was essentially telling Elmo and the rest of Sesame Street to stop being a bunch of bums and get a job. Mitt Romney’s vision for America includes the death of Amtrak, slashed funding for the arts and humanities, and a privatized PBS.
If you want to know what PBS would like without government funding turn on A&E, History Channel, or the ever oxymoronic Learning Channel. These networks have been long held up by Republicans as the private sector alternative to PBS, but look at the programming that these channels actually contain. Would Sesame Street be replaced with Pawn Stars? Instead of Antiques Roadshow, how about Storage Wars? Replace Downton Abbey with Toddlers and Tiaras.
PBS gets to be PBS because they don’t have to be concerned with ratings. Their goal is to produce top notch programming. Can you imagine Nova being replaced with Mythbusters? In Mitt Romney’s America, that is exactly what would happen. Romney’s vision sounds like it could have been spoken by any number of House Republicans. His lack of independent thought reveals a candidate that is still trying to pander to his base.
If Mitt Romney is elected president, public broadcasting will cease to exist. PBS will become a for profit commercial venture that will succumb to the corporate agenda.
If Mitt Romney has his way, it will be goodbye Big Bird, hello reality television. Mitt Romney doesn’t see the value of public television, which is one the reasons why voters are likely to not see the value in Mitt Romney.